Kids Media Matters

What matters to... Kevin O’Connor

    What matters to...


Kevin has been nominated for an Emmy and has renovated his own Victorian house, but his greatest challenge and accomplishment is being a father. In the new Kids Media Matters feature, Kevin talks about raising young children in a crowded media world.

What inspired your career choice to get into public television?
For me, it was just good luck. I was working in finance at a bank when PBS came calling. As an avid fan of This Old House it was the first place my wife and I turned to when we started working on our own house. One thing led to another, and before I knew it, I was on two PBS television shows. You never know where life will take you.

How have you had the opportunity to get involved in kids media/projects in your current role?
We try to make at least one show a season dedicated to projects kids can build with their parents. As a father of three, I know very well how much kids love building and how much they love working with their parents, so the kids episode of Ask This Old House is always fun. I especially like when the kids get to come to our workshop and see that amazing space.

As a father, what do you look out for in entertainment for your child?
I look for something that is entertaining and educational. It has to be entertaining or the kids won’t watch it. It has to be educational or I won’t allow it. PBS is full of great shows, like Curious George, that I know my son loves and are safe for him to watch.

What was your favorite show as a kid?
There was a show called the Big Blue Marble, and it had stories from all over the world. I can remember watching it on Saturday mornings with my brothers and sister and being enthralled by all the stories from far-away, exotic places. It seems like the world is smaller these days, but when I was a kid it seemed so huge.

Any advice to today’s parents of young kids?
Get involved. TV can be educational but it can’t replace a parent’s involvement. Even great TV tends to be passive, and kids were meant to be active, physically and mentally.  Get down on the floor and play with them, challenge them, love them unequivocally.


About Kids Media Matters

Get tips and tools to help your family make smart choices about media.

About the Author

You can make a difference

Every time children watch TV or surf the Web, they are learning something. But what are they learning? Grown-ups need to shepherd children through the maze of images that may shape their minds, for better or worse.

>> See how you can make a difference

kids media matters kitStart by signing up for the free kit: Kids, Media, and Values — A Wake-Up Call



Children and media

Discover how TV, movies, advertising, computers, and video games can shape your child's development and what you can do to create a media-literate household.

Boy watching TV

TV & movies

Girl at her computer


Boy with video game controller

Video games

Boy wondering about ads



Sign Up

Sign-up for updates from the WGBH Parents' Guide, WGBH promotions, and previews of what's coming up on WGBH TV.

Support for WGBH is provided by:
Become a WGBH sponsor